15 May 2016 - Territory Labor will invest an additional $124 million over four years into Territory Schools, Labor leader Michael Gunner announced today.
“We want every child in the NT to have the best possible future. That’s why we put kids first at every opportunity,” Mr Gunner said.
“Labor will always place the future of Territory children at the centre of our Government.
“This significant investment in schools will provide children with more options and better education outcomes.
“It will restore the teachers that have been ripped out of schools and more resources for schools to support their students.
“We will inject $20 million per year over four years from 1 January 2017 directly into school budgets enabling 164 more teachers to be employed across the Territory,” Mr Gunner said.
“The balance of this $124 million commitment will be detailed in future education announcements.
“Education is at the core of Labor’s values. Our opponents have ripped teachers and funds out of the education system and Labor is determined to restore education to the highest order of Government priority.
“Under the CLP we have fewer teachers, less subjects and crowded classrooms. Labor puts kids first but the CLP puts kids last.
“Labor believes a fully functional and thriving education system is the key to the future of a strong economy. A good education is also vital to building a strong society.”
16 May 2016 - Territory Labor Leader, Michael Gunner, today reiterated his support to education and the future of our kids with a commitment to provide every Territory school with $300,000 for minor new works or repairs and maintenance projects.
“A Territory Labor Government will be defined by the way we support the future of Territory children,” Mr Gunner said.
“Each Territory school will receive $300,000 to put towards repairs and maintenance, extensions or a school minor works project.
“We will leave it to the schools, their School Councils and School Boards, to make the decisions about how to spend it.
“Schools will be able to contribute this money to co-fund a project from their own resources or use it directly on a smaller project or repairs and maintenance to boost the effectiveness of their school.
“There will also be a four year $5 million program for homelands schools repairs and maintenance and upgrades,” Mr Gunner said.
Michael Gunner said that the grant will also act as a stimulus package to boost work for small contractors across the Territory who are currently in an economic hole because of the failure of the CLP Government’s economic policies.
“These grants will be delivered in conjunction with our ‘Buy Local’ policy and that means we will directly support local business and jobs along with improving every school in the Territory and that’s a good thing,” Mr Gunner said.
“The grants will be one off and programmed to be delivered out over 4 years to the 189 schools in the Northern Territory, of which 152 are Government and 37 are non-government.”
The total cost of this commitment is $61.7 million over 4 years and it will be funded from within the capital works budget.
30 October 2015 - Celebrating World Teachers’ Day today Shadow Education Minister, Nicole Manison said that the Territory has dedicated, passionate teachers working to support our students.
"We have fantastic teachers right across the Territory working hard in the classroom to support our students," Ms Manison said.
"Today we should be thanking our dedicated teachers for their contribution to the Territory.
“The hard work and dedication of our teachers should be acknowledged and they deserve our support.
“Sadly, we’ve seen massive cuts to school staff, right across the Territory under the CLP.
“The Minister for Education confirmed earlier this year that 330 staff had been cut from Territory schools.
“With both teaching positions and school staff positions being cut from schools, the results are obvious – more and more pressure on teachers.
“A Territory Labor Government will ensure teachers and schools get the support they need so they need."
Media contact: Ella Maguire - 0408 773 647
5 August 2015 - Today’s NAPLAN results prove that the CLP government’s plan to improve education by cutting teachers and support to students has failed, Shadow Minister for Education, Nicole Manison said today.
“Today’s NAPLAN results show what Territorians have known all along – that you can’t improve outcomes for kids by having fewer teachers and bigger classes,” Ms Manison said.
“The Northern Territory has the highest percentage of students not meeting minimum benchmark results and the response from the CLP has been three years of cuts to education.
“The Territory NAPLAN results are not increasing at the rate we need them to so we have more children gaining the education they need for their future.
“Under the CLP Government we have seen cuts to funding, teachers, support staff and programs which have impacted schools right across the Territory.
“The Government should be investing in education, not cutting it.
“As well as investing in education, Territory Labor will also present a key focus on the important 0-4 age group.
“All the research shows that if we invest in the early years before school then we help set children up for a brighter future.
“That’s why Territory Labor is holding our next community forum on 10 August at the Gray Community Hall in Palmerston to listen to early childhood experts and the community about ensuring our early childhood workforce has the skills, conditions and employees to build a better future for all Territory children.”
Shadow Minister for Education Nicole Manison said the CLP Government education cuts have put more pressure on schools in 2015.
“Education Minister Peter Chandler promised no school would be worse off under global school budgets,” Ms Manison said.
“Instead, schools are dealing with more cuts because of the global school budget rollout.
“That means less teachers, less support staff, less programs and bigger classes under global school budgets.
“Many schools are now receiving their final budgets for the year ahead and are still having to deal with tough decisions on money, when we want them to be able to fully focus on education outcomes.
“The additional money that the government has allocated to try to smooth out the problems caused by global school budgets fell far short of covering the cuts.
“Most of the additional funding was to be allocated to special, middle and senior schools, despite many primary schools also experiencing shortfalls.
“New school councils have only just been established and they will have to work even harder to do more with less.
“The global school budgets policy roll-out has been a mess and has forced principals and school councils to make hard choices on what they would have to cut.
“Education is vital to the future of the Territory and needs strong support from government, not cuts by stealth.
“Labor is committed to investing in education and giving students, teachers and schools the support they need.”
Opposition Education Minister Natasha Fyles today called on the CLP Government to stop ignoring the critical needs of young Territory adults with disabilities.
Ms Fyles said young people with disabilities and their families have been trying to meet with Health Minister Robyn Lambley and Education Minister Peter Chandler about a proposal that will support them when they complete their school years.
“Families of young adults who attend either Henbury School or Palmerston Senior College need a facility where they can continue to socialise and learn once their formal education is complete.
“They have developed a proposal for a hub facility that will offer post school support and programs, be a space where the young adults can meet with friends, take part in activities and give carers respite.
“This community-driven proposal is designed to meet the needs of a group of young people in our community who, at the moment, get very little support from the NT Government.
“At the very least they should be able to get a meeting with the relevant Ministers to put their case, not be fobbed off by a Government that doesn’t seem to care.”
Ms Fyles was joined today by Labor candidate for Casuarina Lauren Moss, who is supporting the young adults and their families in their efforts to get NT Government support for the plan.
“This facility would be a place where young adults with disabilities can keep in contact with the friends they made through school and be in a stimulating environment.
“At the moment many youths with disabilities only have the option of home-based carers when they finish their schooling, so they become isolated from their peer network and have difficulty accessing appropriate activities.
“I am pleased to have the opportunity to support this model for a place that young adults with disabilities can call their own and I urge the NT Government to give them the attention they deserve.”
Media contact: Mandy Taylor 0414 634159
Shadow Minister for Education, Natasha Fyles said that the CLP Government’s education cuts are putting at risk efforts to improve the Territory’s NAPLAN results.
“It is clear that education outcomes are not improved by cutting funding for schools,” Ms Fyles said.
“The NAPLAN results show the percentage of students at or above national minimum standard is lower than in 2013 in 13 of 20 assessed areas including all test categories for Year 3 students, four out of five categories for Year 5 students and three out of five categories for Year 9 students.
“These latest NAPLAN results show that the CLP’s cuts are taking our students backwards.
“In the 13/14 Budget the CLP government budgeted $685.172m for public schools and this has dropped to $670.362m in the 14/15 Budget – a cut of $15m.
“In the last year the CLP Government has cut 125 teaching positions from Territory schools.
“Compounding the teacher losses, 60 support positions have also been cut from schools, meaning that more pressure is put on teachers and there is less individual attention on students as a result.
“Fewer teachers and fewer support staff is not the way to boost education outcomes in the Territory.”